What should I pack for Thailand? I see this question asked all the time in travel forums and Facebook groups.
I’m always blown away when I see people traveling to Thailand for a 2 week trip with a 25kg luggage bag. Seriously, what the hell are they carrying in there?
Let’s get this straight. You don’t need ten pairs of jeans and three hoodies for two weeks in Thailand. You’re just not going to get through it all. If you’re still in this mindset then read my general guide on packing light for travel, it will revolutionize what’s in your bag.
Packing for a trip to Thailand is much easier than you think. The hot weather means that you really don’t need any heavy jackets or other warm equipment. One light hoodie/sweatshirt will do the job. If you’re still cold, then turn off the air conditioning.
In fact, if done right, you can actually go to Thailand for one month with less than 10kg in your bag! That’s enough to fit in your carry own allowance for many airlines. Not only is it easier to carry around, but it saves you money. Win-win situation.
Here is my breakdown of what I pack for a trip to Thailand. The list is fairly simple; suitable clothes, photography gear, sturdy shoes, and some other useful bits and pieces like my Bangkok travel guide – available as an ebook (weighs nothing).
Let’s start with the bare essentials. You’ll need clothes unless you plan on getting arrested before you even get out of your home country. This is exactly what I packed in my bag for a one month trip to Thailand. Total weight of clothes, 4kg.
- One pair of swim shorts – good for walking, swimming, snorkeling, and hot bus rides.
- Two long-sleeve shirts – perfect for keeping off mosquitos off in the jungle
- Three short sleeve tees – standard daily wear, keeps you cool when it’s hot
- Two pairs of chinos – don’t pack jeans as they are heavy and just won’t dry well
- One week worth of underwear and socks – wash the lot every week
- One pair of hiking shoes – daily footwear, great for jungle treks, climbing mountains (such as Doi Inthanon), and city walking
- One pair of flip-flops (thongs in Aussie) – great for the beach. You could also substitute flip-flops for a pair of lightweight water shoes which drain and dry quickly
- One good quality lightweight rain jacket – keeps you dry in the wet season
A note on clothing: if you plan to visit temples in Thailand you will need to pack clothes that cover your shoulders and knees.
It is no secret that I am big on photography, and to makes matters worse, I’ve started shooting videos for my YouTube channel. That means I have to carry even more photography gear (but I still stay under 10kg).
Here is an overview of what I pack to take photos and videos. Check out my post on my travel photography gear for a full breakdown. Total weight of photography gear, 5kg.
- Canon 6D – awesome full-frame DSLR camera, interchangeable lenses and great quality photos
- Wide-angle lens – great lens for capturing huge landscape scenes
- 50mm lens – the king of street photography, it is light to carry and quick to shoot with
- DJI Mavic Air Fly More Combo – all my aerial footage, all of it
- Yi action camera – 4K underwater footage for under $200, can’t go wrong
- Tripod – so useful for long exposure photos and shooting stable video
Note: stay legal and read my guide on how to register a drone in Thailand.
Of course, clothes and cameras alone won’t get you around. Here are a few other things I pack for Thailand and recommend you do too. Total weight of other bits, 1kg.
- Vaude 48L Backpack, small enough to fit in the carry-on allowance
- Waterproof backpack cover – when it rains it pours in Thailand
- Travel adapters – keeping everything charged and working
- Insect repellent – dengue and malaria are common enough to be concerned
- Sunscreen – bring this from home, sunscreen is so expensive in Thailand
Top Travel Tips for Thailand!
- Download my Thailand packing checklist to make sure you don’t forget anything.
- Check out my favorite cheap hotels in Thailand